LinkedIn get Endorsements: Endorsing on LinkedIn 101 Tips and Tricks 2018
The goal of LinkedIn is to give users a smarter way to stay in touch. After you have a connection with someone on LinkedIn, you can always message him or her even if the person changes jobs, moves to a different city, or gets a new phone number.
As you build your network, you should maintain your network so you’re not desperately trying to connect only when you need something. When I say, “maintain your network,” I am not saying that your network needs to know every meal you’ve eaten, what you did at the beach last weekend or any other communication you might broadcast on another social networking site.
Instead, focus on professional reasons to stay in contact, whether it’s sharing a relevant and interesting article you found on the Internet, congratulating a connection on his or her work anniversary or new job title, or commenting on someone else’s announcement.
In the sections that follow, I talk about a different way to interact with your network. LinkedIn helps you manage your professional relationships, so use the tools that LinkedIn provides to reach out to your network en masse while still being personal. Here are some of the advantages of using this system:
Your network is more likely to help when needed.
It’s easy to go months or years without direct or indirect communication with some of your network, especially fellow alumni or co-workers from past jobs. Normally, you’re not going to know when you need to lean on your network until something bad happens, so reaching out in desperation to a cold contact isn’t going to help.
But when you communicate, even on an occasional basis, at least the contact is warmer and more receptive to respond and help when you need something big, such as a new job, a professional reference, or a connection to someone in the contact’s network.
You can encourage new and ongoing communication.
Professionals use LinkedIn to record career accomplishments, from new jobs and promotions to receiving awards and certifications. LinkedIn notifies you when someone in your network has a career event (for example, a work anniversary) and encourages you to reach out and communicate, whether it’s to write Congrats or connect with a common friend who just joined LinkedIn.
By encouraging regular communication, LinkedIn helps reduce the awkwardness when you need to reach out to a contact.
LinkedIn Messaging is available at your fingertips 24/7.
No one good time exists to communicate with others on LinkedIn. Anytime during the week when you have a few minutes, reach out to one or a group of connections to stay in touch or make yourself relevant.
You don’t need a laptop to stay connected; instead, use the LinkedIn dedicated mobile application. You can download and install the LinkedIn app for your Apple or Android OS system and have the same communication features found on the computer at your fingertips.
An active network can lead to unanticipated benefits.
As you communicate with your network, you might see more people wanting to connect with you, endorse your skills, or share your content on their networks. As more people view your profile and see what you contribute, the further your reach will extend, possibly resulting in immediate benefits as well as long-term success.
Creating a status update to stay connected
The good news is that you don’t need to install anything or pay to use many of the features that will help you keep up regular communication with your network. You may have to adjust settings to get some automatic notifications.
One of the easiest ways to get started with good communication is to share an update, as follows:.
1. Pull up the home page and click in the update text box, in the middle of the screen, where the prompt reads Share an article, photo, video, or idea.
2. Start writing your update in the box provided, where it says Write here or use @ to mention someone.
You can also click the Images button to add one or more pictures to your update, or the Video button to upload a video file to your update.
3. To link to someone while typing your update:
Type the @ symbol and begin typing the person’s name. LinkedIn starts prompting you for potential matches, starting with first-degree connections, and then potential second- or third-degree network members.
Select the name you want to mention. The name is highlighted and becomes part of your update. You can link to more than one person. When your update is posted, that person will receive a notification that he or she was mentioned in your post and will be able to go straight to the post to see what you wrote.
4. When you’ve finished writing your update, you can choose privacy settings for this post by clicking the drop-down arrow next to the Post Settings button, in the bottom-right corner, and make your selection.
Your privacy choices for your post are as follows:
Public + Twitter: Anyone on or off LinkedIn or Twitter can see the post.
Connections: Only LinkedIn members who are connected to you will see this post on their news feed.
5.If you want to disallow comments on your post, deselect the Allow Comment on This Post option in the Post Setting drop-down list.
This option is set to Yes by default. You can alter this setting later, after the post has been made, in case you forget to turn off (or on) the comments feature at this stage.
6. To make your update live on LinkedIn, click the blue Post button.
The post is added to the top of your news feed, and a message appears telling you that the post was successful. You might also see a notification pop-up in your notifications feed.
Creating your own post is the first step. In the next section, I talk about interacting with your network’s status updates to stay connected.
Interacting with status updates
Another way to stay connected is to look at updates from your connections and decide to contribute to the discussion, in a private message to the person or a public comment or reaction. Here are a few of the most common ways to stay in touch:
Interact with a news item.
Scroll down the home page, paying attention to the news feed items in the middle column, until you see a news item from a first-degree connection with whom you want to interact.
Then select one or more of the following buttons:
Like: Signal that you like the information the person is sharing.
Comment: Write a comment in the box provided. To tag one or more people in your comment, add the @ symbol.
Share: Share this news item with your network while adding your comment at the top of the news item.
See your most recent notifications.
Click Notifications (in the top navigation bar). Your notifications feed is a mix of notices regarding your activity, your network’s activity, summaries of news items, and miscellaneous items of note.
Scroll through the list until you find a life event about someone in your network (such as a new job, a work anniversary, or a personal anniversary).
Pay attention to items that start with Congratulate or Wish because this is LinkedIn’s way of encouraging you to reach out to a first-degree connection.
View a connection’s activity.
If you have a connection with whom you’re hoping to have an interaction, go to the person’s profile and view the activity.
Use the search text box in the top navigation bar to search for the connection. When you see the connection’s name in the results list, click it to display the person’s profile. Scroll down to the Articles & Activity section, between the Highlights and Experience sections.
Click an article or post in the list, and then like, comment, or share the article or post.
View a connection’s groups.
When studying someone’s profile, scroll down to the Interests section of the profile and see what LinkedIn groups he or she belongs to. If the group is appropriate for you, join it and start participating in a few discussions in which your connection is already participating.
Expanding your group affiliations raises your profile and allows you to meet new people as well.LinkedIn groups allow you to meet more people than just your first-degree connections.
Follow your second- or third-degree connections.
If you have identified second- or third-degree network members that you want to add to your first-degree network, one way to strengthen the connection is to follow them.
Then their status updates and articles appear in your news feed. To follow someone, simply pull up the person’s profile, click the More button (below the profile picture), and select Follow in the drop-down list. (The menu item changes to Following.)
Then click somewhere on the page that’s not a link to close the menu. After you start following this person, watch your news feed and act on any item from this person in the hoped of learning more and creating a good reason to connect.
Pay attention to mutual connections because having a friend introduce you to someone is one of the best ways to add that person to your network. New members join the site every day, so be sure to interact in these different ways on an ongoing basis.
One of the main reasons why LinkedIn is so popular is that many people believe that “It’s not what you know; it’s who you know.” However, recruiters, hiring managers, CEOs, investors, and more are interested in what you know.
The people who know you best are the people in your network who have observed your work firsthand and can speak to the quality and degree of your skill set. LinkedIn endorsements are the way that users can identify the skills that they think their contacts have.
Initially, LinkedIn offered this ability through its recommendations feature. The endorsements function, which is less comprehensive, was created so that users could identify skills in their contacts more easily and quickly.
Endorsements had been available only a short time when LinkedIn announced more than 2 billion endorsements had been given, signaling a widespread adoption of this new functionality. So why are endorsements important to understand and use? Here are a few reasons:
Endorsements are an easier way to recognize someone’s skill set.
Although a recommendation can be a thorough and positive review of someone’s job, endorsing a particular skill can quickly show the community someone’s skill set.
Endorsements are a great way for you to highlight important skills.
Having your key skill set as endorsements in your profile signals to recruiters and hiring managers not only that you have the skills to do the job but also that other people believe in your skills enough to endorse you.
Just like with recommendations, people are more likely to believe other people’s testimony about your skills than your own assertions.
Endorsements are independent of a specific position.
When you write a recommendation for someone on LinkedIn, it is tied to one position. When you endorse someone’s skill, it’s tied to that person’s entire profile, not just to one job that was held any number of years ago.
Endorsements are faster and more specific than recommendations.
It’s much easier and more precise for your contacts to endorse your specific skills than to write an entire recommendation.
Many of your contacts can only speak to certain skills anyway, and with LinkedIn endorsements, they can “give kudos with just one click.” You can have up to 50 skills endorsed by your network.
The top endorsed skills appear on your profile page, under the Featured Skills & Endorsements section. Although many skills in the Endorsements list come from what you entered as skills and experience in your profile, your contacts can add skills that you may not have identified yet.
Endorsing someone on LinkedIn
LinkedIn often prompts you to endorse your contacts for specific skills in their profile. This feature makes it easy and as automatic as possible to endorse your contacts.
When you’re looking at a contact’s profile, scroll down to the Featured Skills & Endorsements section, You can endorse a skill by clicking the plus sign next to it. The plus sign changes to a checkmark withdraw an endorsement, click the check mark next to the skill. (The check mark returns to a plus sign.)
To expand the list, click View x More Skills at the bottom of the section. You can endorse or withdraw your endorsement from the newly appeared skills that show up.
When you’re finished, scroll to a different part of your profile or perform another action. There’s no Save button to save your work; each skill endorsement is recorded when you click the plus sign.
At this point, the process is concluded for that contact. When you visit another contact’s profile page, you can repeat the process for that contact.
Think carefully about which skills you can honestly endorse another person. You should endorse only skills that you truly believe the other person has or have witnessed in action. You may also want to consider what skills the other person wants to be highlighted in his or her profile, which can be evident from the person’s most endorsed skills.
Don’t feel compelled to endorse someone’s skill just because LinkedIn prompts you. You can add skill endorsements at any time, even after you initially endorse someone's skills.
LinkedIn does not automatically add incoming endorsements to your profile; you must accept those endorsements first. When you receive an endorsement, it appears in your notifications list at the top-right corner of the screen,In addition, if you signed up to receive notifications, you’ll receive an email letting you know who endorsed you and for what skills.
The easiest way to accept (or reject) these endorsements is to view and edit your LinkedIn profile:
1. Click the Me icon, in the top navigation bar, and then select View Profile from the drop-down list that appears.
You can also respond to the notification message that LinkedIn sends you. Either choice displays the Edit Profile screen.
2. Scroll down to the Featured Skills & Endorsements section, and click View Your Pending Endorsements.
3. Decide whether or not to add these endorsements to your profile:
To add the incoming endorsement to your profile, click the Add to Profile button. To ignore this endorsement and deal with it later, click the Ignore button. While you’re deciding whether to add these endorsements to your profile, LinkedIn offers you the chance to give endorsements to people in your network.
4. (Optional) After you’ve accepted the endorsements, contact the person or people who endorsed you with a quick note to say thanks. By doing so, you have a valid reason to stay in touch and you cultivate the relationship.
You can also visit the person’s profile page and decide to reciprocate by endorsing some of his or her skills. Either way, staying in contact is a great networking chance that shouldn’t be missed.
Now that you’ve added endorsements to your profile, you should decide whether you want to keep in your profile the endorsements that you’ve received and added new skills that can be endorsed by your connections.
When you’re ready to manage your skills and endorsements, follow these steps:
1. Click the Me icon in the top navigation bar and select View Profile from the list that appears.
2. Scroll down to the Featured Skills & Endorsements header, and click Add a New Skill, which is next to the header.
3. Enter the name of the new skill you want to add:
a. Start typing the skill name. As you type, a list of skill names appears, based on other users’ profiles
b. Select the skill in the list that best matches what you want, or finishes typing your own skill name. You don’t have to accept what LinkedIn prompts you for, especially if you are trying to ensure the right keywords come up for your skills.
c. Click the Add button to add the skill to your list.
4. Click the pencil icon next to Add a New Skill.
5. Review your endorsement settings:
Scroll down and click the Adjust Endorsement Settings link. The window is shown, where you can change a few settings related to endorsements.
Review your settings and make sure you can receive endorsements and leave endorsements for other people. To change a setting to Yes or No, click the slider next to the option.
When you’re finished, click the X in the top-right corner to close the window setting
6. To delete a skill from your profile, click the X next to the skill.
7. To reorder a skill, hover your cursor over the four-line icon to the right of the skill; when you see an X, click and drag the skill to its new position in your skill list.
When you release the mouse, the skill will fall into place.
8. To hide an endorsement:
Click the skill name or the number next to the skill.
Click the slider to the right of the person’s name to make that endorsement invisible, effectively hiding that person’s endorsement from your profile.
Use the scroll bar on the right to scroll through the names of your connections who endorsed the highlighted skill and decide whether you want to hide any of those endorsements.
When you’re done, click the X at the top right to return to the Skills & Endorsements window.
9. When you’re finished, click the Save button to save your changes.
The Skills & Endorsements list reappears, with an updated number of endorsements for your skills based on your changes.
Accessing LinkedIn with a Mobile Device
As more and more people use their mobile devices to access the Internet and do their daily tasks, companies such as LinkedIn have been aggressively ramping up their mobile app development to meet the needs of their device-toting user base. The look and design of the apps have evolved to give LinkedIn users data in an easy-to-read format.
In addition, the number of LinkedIn apps has increased over time to keep the user experience simple and effective.
Rather than having one bloated app that forces users to access all the different LinkedIn functions, the company decided to develop stand-alone mobile apps that focus on a specific function.
These can be used separately or with LinkedIn’s main mobile app. To check out LinkedIn’s different mobile offerings, visit the mobile page at https://mobile.linkedin.com
LinkedIn mobile app:
The main LinkedIn app allows you to interact with LinkedIn as you would when using your desktop or laptop computer. You can view your news feed of friends’ stories, update your profile, talk to your connections, add people to your network, and search for more information.
LinkedIn Job Search:
This targeted app allows you to search and filter the job openings on the LinkedIn job board. The app also includes functionality that lets you see whom you know at the company you’re applying to, as well as information about the person who posted the job opening.
You can apply for jobs through the app with a couple of taps, and track the jobs that you’ve looked at, applied, or saved. You can set up notifications on your mobile device to hear when jobs become available or if a targeted job posting is about to expire.
If you’re a big user of LinkedIn Groups, this app is for you. It enables you to monitor and contribute to the discussions in the LinkedIn Groups where you are a member, as well as gives you the ability to post new discussions to those groups from your mobile device.
This app gives you mobile access to over 18 million slide presentations, information graphics, and videos that have been uploaded by LinkedIn members around the world. Learn about various topics from your network and leading industry professionals, all from the ease of your mobile device.
LinkedIn Learning and Lynda.com:
In April 2015, LinkedIn acquired Lynda. com, a subscription-based online learning website. While Lynda.com maintains its own app, LinkedIn and Lynda.com developed a new LinkedIn Learning mobile app, which is available to LinkedIn Learning subscribers and allows users to access a vast library of educational presentations to learn about thousands of different skills.
Learn from the experts while on the go and advance your skills and career with a LinkedIn Learning monthly subscription and this app. You can also download this content to your mobile device for future viewing.
Installing a LinkedIn Mobile App
When you’re ready to install an app, follow these steps from your mobile device. (In the following steps, I used an iPad to install the main LinkedIn app.)
1. Pull up your main source for installing mobile apps.
If you have an Apple device, go to the App Store; if you have an Android device, go to the Google Play Store. You can also go to LinkedIn’s mobile page at https://mobile.linkedin.com, find the app you want to install, and then tap either the App Store or Google Play Store button, depending on your device.
2. On the search screen, type the word LinkedIn (and any additional words, if you want one of the specialized LinkedIn mobile apps, such as LinkedIn Job Search or LinkedIn Groups).
3. Tap the appropriate icon to display the app info screen.
When you see the name and description of the app you want, tap the Get or Install button to start installing the app.
Your device may prompt you to log into your iTunes or Android account at this point. In addition, some apps, such as the main LinkedIn mobile app, offer in-app purchases, which means that Apple or Google will want to verify your billing method in case you buy something in the app.
There may be requirements for the level of operating system you need on your device before you can install this app. If your operating system needs to be updated, your mobile device will warn you of this and stop the installation process. Update your OS and then reattempt this installation.
5. After the app is fully installed, tap its icon.
A login screen appears, where you can sign in with your LinkedIn account or join LinkedIn with a new account.
6. If this it the first time you’ve opened the LinkedIn app, tap Sign In, type your LinkedIn user ID and password in the boxes provided and then tap Next.
After you’ve signed into your LinkedIn account, asking whether you want to enable notifications, so the app can send a message to your device’s screen when certain actions occur
7. Tap the Allow button to turn on notifications, or tap Don’t Allow to keep notifications turned off.
At any time, you can go into the app’s settings to change this setting. Congratulations, you’ve installed the app! Repeat this process with any other app you want to install on your device.
Breaking Down the Sections of the LinkedIn Mobile App
After you install the main LinkedIn mobile app and sign in to your LinkedIn account from the app, you’ll be ready to start using the app. Before you do, though, it’s important to understand the capabilities now at your fingertips.
When you use the LinkedIn mobile app, note the series of buttons along the bottom of the screen. These buttons enable you to easily reach the five core sections of the LinkedIn app:
This section mirrors your homepage news feed, integrating elements from your first-degree connections and the news sources you follow on LinkedIn, news items and blog posts that LinkedIn thinks you may like, and job recommendations.
LinkedIn takes advantage of the interactivity of your mobile device by allowing you to swipe stories in this section to indicate whether you find them valuable or not, and then remembers your choices and learns over time to help present a fine-tuned list of elements more to your liking.
This section works in a similar way as the My Network icon on the LinkedIn website home page. You can see a list of your connections, add contacts to your account, view and respond to incoming invitations to join your network, and see people you may know whom you can add to your network.
This section mirrors your LinkedIn inbox, enabling you to message or chat with your connections on LinkedIn. You can initiate a conversation or follow up on existing communications while you’re away from your desk. You can change your notifications for a conversation or delete a conversation from the screen.
This section is the same as the Notifications list that LinkedIn provides on the website, showing you when and where you’re being mentioned, and who is reading your profile or your posts. LinkedIn may recommend influencers you can follow and give you a daily rundown of news that might interest you.
Finally, you can update your settings by scrolling down the screen, and then find and tap the View Settings link at the top right.
This notification setting is particularly important to mobile users because they can set push notifications from the settings screen, allowing them to see pop-up notifications, such as an incoming text message, so they don’t miss a new item of interest.
This section is the same as the general LinkedIn jobs screen. You can search for jobs, apply to jobs, and see jobs that you may be interested in. When you type keywords in the search bar at the top, job search results appear based on those keywords.
In addition to the five main icons along the bottom of the LinkedIn mobile app screen, you can also easily update your profile by tapping your profile photo, in the top left of any mobile app screen and to the left of the Search box.
Your LinkedIn profile page appears. You can tap the blue + button, at the bottom right, to add information to your profile so your professional brand can stay strong or get refreshed.
Finally, a Search box appears along the top of all LinkedIn app screens. When you search for people, LinkedIn tries to guess what you’re looking for by studying variations of what you’ve typed, coupled with your network of connections and the list of companies where you have been employed.
You can also type a collection of keywords (someone’s name and employer, job skills, or alma mater, for example) to help find the person on LinkedIn.
Connecting Your App Usage with Website Usage
After you have installed one or more of LinkedIn mobile apps, and start using the apps interchangeably with your desktop or laptop, you should notice a synergy in which all your actions are captured and available regardless of platform.
Many of your actions are replicated or transmitted to your main LinkedIn account and will be reflected when you log into the LinkedIn website with your desktop computer:
Communications will show up in LinkedIn Messages, and you will see the same order of conversations on both the app and the website, where the most recent conversation is at the top of the screen.
Any profile updates you made with the app will be stored in the profile you see through the website and vice versa. Depending on your profile settings, your network will be notified of any profile changes you make on either the app or the website.
Any interactions you have with LinkedIn members, whether you like or comment on someone’s update, participate in a group discussion, or accept or reject an invitation, will be the same whether you did it through the app or the website.
When you swipe stories from the mobile app news feed, those choices will be remembered when LinkedIn displays your homepage news feed on your desktop computer.
Similar to the settings available from the LinkedIn website, a number of settings through the LinkedIn app can be updated by tapping the Profile Photo button and then tapping the gear icon (settings) in the top right.
Any settings updated with your mobile device are reflected when you next log into the desktop version of LinkedIn. As of this writing, only some settings are accessible through the app, and they are divided into three categories:
You can update the list of email addresses on your account, add a phone number, change your password, sync your contacts or calendar, set up your news feed preferences, close your account, upgrade to LinkedIn Premium, and review the active sessions you have where you’re logged into LinkedIn from your various devices.
From the app, you can choose whether your network is notified when you make profile changes, and you can choose who can follow you. You can change the setting where you are visible or private when viewing someone else’s profile and manage your active status visibility and the list of whom you’re blocking.
You can change your advertising preferences and choose who can find your profile by typing your email address or phone number. You can decide whether public data can be used to improve your profile and whether work experience from your profile can be accessed by Resume Assistant, a feature in Microsoft Word.
You can decide which, if any, mobile push notifications you receive from LinkedIn. This way, you can decide what you want the LinkedIn app to notify you about.
In addition, you can set the types of messages you want to receive from members and partners, whether you want read receipts and typing indicators, and whether you want smart replies when you respond to a message.
How to use LinkedIn to promote Business or show Promotion
LinkedIn Ads allow businesses and entrepreneurs to create and manage their own self-service advertising and create a targeted, specialized message to reach a portion of the overall LinkedIn network. In this blog, we have to explain How to show Promotion on LinkedIn.
The first thing you should consider any advertising system, including LinkedIn ads, is whether that system can help you reach your target audience. So ask yourself, could you benefit from a network of over 500 million working professionals and business owners around the world?. But if the answer is yes, keep reading.
One of the powerful aspects of LinkedIn ads is that you can really target your target audience. Given that LinkedIn knows a lot about its members, it can help deliver your ad to a specific audience, depending on your needs.
Perhaps you’re targeting only business owners who live in the Pacific Northwest and have more than five years of experience.
Maybe you’re marketing a financial software package for accountants who work in large companies. Then again, you could be trying to reach all company presidents or CEOs of small, medium, or large companies.
With LinkedIn, you can set one or more filters to target the most relevant audience for your ad, which should increase the participation and effectiveness of your ad. When you look at your LinkedIn home page, you can see two of the three types of ads that LinkedIn promotes to its members:
Text (and image) ads:
Just as they sound, text ads offer you the ability to create a basic ad message, which is typically displayed along the top of the screen or on the rightmost column of the home page or your message inbox, sometimes with a designated image.
You can set a specific URL that, when clicked, takes the user to a specific destination or results website, either on or off LinkedIn.
These updates are included in the news feed of LinkedIn users but are clearly labeled Sponsored or Promoted so that the users know it’s not coming from a connection.
Sponsored updates typically contain a link to an article, a destination website, or a LinkedIn Company page, and give the user the ability to interact with your company through like and comment links connected to the update.
The third type of advertisement, sponsored InMail, isn’t shown in the home page. These ads are sponsored email messages that you can write and send directly to members based on the demographic filters that you set.
Only active members will receive these messages. LinkedIn has controls that prevent sponsored InMail from flooding its members’ LinkedIn inboxes, so members are more likely to open the messages they receive this way.
Your messages are customized to display well on a desktop or a mobile screen, and you can include call-to-action buttons as part of your InMail.
These ads enable you to drive qualified professionals to your business or LinkedIn landing page because LinkedIn offers you a variety of targeting options to choose the right audience.
You can control your ad budget and choose between two cost models: pay-per-click (PPC), where you pay every time a potential customer clicks the link in your ad, or cost-per-impression (CPM), where you are billed for every 1,000 times your ad is displayed on a potential customer’s screen (that display is also known as an impression), regardless of whether the link was clicked.
If your ad budget is more than $25,000 per month, you can have access to your own account manager and more advertising options. Visit the LinkedIn Business Solutions page for more information at https://business.linkedin.com/ marketing solutions.
Elements of LinkedIn Ads that will seem familiar to anyone who is engaged in some online advertising, especially if you’ve used sites such as Google AdWords or Facebook Advertising.
Beyond the targeting filters, LinkedIn Ads also lets you control the bidding amount you’re willing to spend per click or impression; run multiple variations of ads to test for the highest conversion rate;
Design your ad through its website by choosing text, images, and destination URLs; and budget your spending to control daily and total ad expenditures.
You get to study the results of your ad campaign to help gauge measurable results, just as you do in other platforms. You can use filters in LinkedIn ads to segment your audience by these factors:
Company name, industry, and size:
Although you can make the argument that people’s employers don’t define who they are as people, employers may make a difference in whether your ad (and your product or service, by extension) would be relevant to them.
You can specify a filter for a company name (let’s say you want only companies that include or exclude a particular word), the company’s industry (perhaps you want to target only transportation or high-tech companies), or the company’s size as defined by the number of employees (this means you could target companies with, say, fewer than 50 employees or 5,001 or more employees).
Job title and job function:
If you’re trying to reach all the software developers or Six Sigma consultants out there, you can create a job title filter and look for specific titles you provide.
Going up one level, the job function filter allows you to target an audience where their job falls under a specific function, such as information technology, marketing, operations, purchasing, or sales.
Okay, you’ve targeted your audience by job title, but is that enough information? After all, someone who’s been doing that specific job for 1 or 2 years will have different needs than someone who’s been a manager at that job for 10 to 15 years.
You can specify someone’s job seniority (years of experience) by different levels, from training and entry (think entry level) to senior, manager, director, VP, and CXO (which is shorthand for any chief officer, such as CEO, CFO, or CTO).
Member schools, fields of study, and degrees:
Let’s say you are a recruiter and are trying to reach people based on their higher education. You can target your audience by specifying one or more names of schools, as well as specific fields of study or degrees, to include or exclude. (For example, maybe you want to reach people with Electrical Engineering degrees but not people with Mechanical Engineering degrees.)
Member skills: You can specify one or more specific skills that members have identified in their profile.
Someone once said that you’re judged by the company you keep, and LinkedIn ads are no exception to that concept. You can target your audience based on the group memberships that people have. This way, your ad can target people who belong to groups that match the goal of what you have to offer.
Years of experience:
Instead of searching for job title or seniority, you can target your audience by years of experience they have in their LinkedIn profile.
If you have a LinkedIn Company page, you can now target your LinkedIn ads two different ways. You can display your ad only to people who are following your LinkedIn Company page, or only to people how are not following your Company page.
Company connections: You can target the first-degree connections of employees at companies that you specify. If you’re trying to reach people who know someone at your target company, for example, this filter is for you.
The best use of filters comes when you combine two or more elements to qualify the audience you need to reach. Although it may seem that targeting project managers,
For example, is good enough, you may really need project managers with specific skills, or project managers who have done the job for five or more years. When deciding which filters to use, think carefully about your target audience.
Creating an Ad Campaign
When you are ready to start an ad campaign, follow these steps:
1. Click the Work icon on the right side of the top navigation bar, and then click Advertise from the drop-down list that appears. The advertising start page, which describes the features and operation of the different ads available.
2. Click the Create ad (or Manage ads) button in the middle of the page. The Campaign Manager start page appears, where you can choose between sponsored update, a text ad, or a sponsored InMail.
3. Click the Select link next to the ad type you want to create. For this example, you walk through creating a text ad. The first time you click any ad product, LinkedIn takes you to an Ad Account creation page.
4. If this is the first time you are creating an ad, do the following on the Add Account page that appears:
a. Define your ad account name.
b. Select your currency.
c. Specify whether you have a Company or Showcase page to tie to your account.
d. Click the Next button to start building your campaign.
5. Define a campaign name and, for first-time users, define the language to be used for your campaign.
Enter the name in the Campaign Name text box. You can use up to 50 characters to define the name of your campaign, so try to create a name that summarizes the goals or target audience of your ad campaign.
Add some detail in the name in case you later run multiple campaigns to test the effectiveness of your message (for example, Sample Campaign A, B, and C).
6. Click Next. The Create Your Ad page appears, where you define the meat of your ad.
7. Define the following, while seeing a preview of your potential and as you write it:
a. Decide where the ad will take people. You can choose your LinkedIn page (and then define which specific page, such as a Company page) or an external website. For the latter, define the exact URL in the My Website box provided.
Enter the headline of your ad. You are limited to a 25-character headline.
Enter the message copy. You have only 75 characters for the message, so choose your words carefully.
(Optional) Provide an image with your ad. Click the pencil icon at the bottom of the sample image to upload the image from your computer.
If you are designing a text ad, choose a format. As you design your ad, a preview of the finished product appears on the right. You can choose different formats for your ad: square, horizontal, or long.
8. Make variations of your ad to test the effectiveness of different text messages or images or both.
You can create up to 15 variations of the same ad to see which combination of text and image gets the most attention. Simply click the Create Another Ad link in the middle of the page and repeat Step 7.
9. When you’re satisfied with the number of ad variations for this campaign, click Next.
10. Use the targeting filters to come up with your ideal target audience for your ad.
You can target potential ad viewers using the information LinkedIn has for their account. You can target based on location, job title, company name, company size, and other elements including the field of study, skills, degrees, group affiliations, or demographic information such as gender or age.
Simply click the particular criteria to set the desired value. As you add filters, the potential audience number is updated along the right side of the screen. Repeat the process until you’ve defined all your criteria.
As of this writing, a location filter is required; you can target up to 10 regions, sub-regions, or countries; and your ad must be able to target at least 1,000 potential viewers, so you can’t use too many precise filters.
11. Click the Next button to proceed.
12. Determine your bid type, bid amount, daily budget, and start date for your campaign.
Decide between CPC and CPM. Then, based on that decision, set the daily budget amount and bid amount. You must assign a minimum CPC bid of $2 per click and a minimum daily budget of $10. As for the start date, you can start the campaign immediately after it is approved, or set a start date.
If you click the Show End Date, Total Budget, and Ad Rotation link, you can choose an end date for your campaign as well. You can also install a tracking tag in your ad at this phase of the ad creation process. Click the Install Insight Tag button to add the tag, which will be helpful when it’s time to look at your ad analytics.
13. Click the Next button.
14. If you are a first-time user, provide a credit card for LinkedIn to the bill when your ad campaign is live.
LinkedIn provides a summary and asks you to enter a valid credit card so it can bill your card after people start clicking your ad or LinkedIn displays your ad with enough impressions to incur a charge on your ad campaign.
After you enter your payment method, scroll down and click the Review Order button so LinkedIn can store that payment information. After your ad account is established with LinkedIn, you won’t see this step again when you build an ad.
15. Scroll down and click the blue Launch Campaign button to start your ad campaign.
That’s it! The confirmation screen is shown. LinkedIn reviews your ad to make sure you’re complying with its ad guidelines, a process that takes an average of 12 hours or less, depending on the day and time you submitted the campaign. You’ll receive a notification after the ad is approved and running.
Managing Your Ad Campaign
After your ad campaign is approved and starts appearing on your audience’s LinkedIn web pages, the LinkedIn Campaign Manager will be able to start displaying relevant information about the performance of your ad campaign.
The Performance page summarizes the following aspects of your campaign:
Number of impressions
Number of clicks
Number of leads (LinkedIn members who submit their information in response to your ad)
Number of social actions (likes, comments, shares, and follows)
Number of conversions (people who clicked your ad and performed your desired action)
You can also choose a metric, such as Clicks, Impressions, or Average CPC, by looking for the Show Graph For header and then clicking the drop-down arrow to its right to choose your metric. You’ll see a line graph showing the data as far back as the most recent day, week, or month of the campaign, or the life of the campaign.
LinkedIn also provides a Click Demographics screen, available by clicking the Demographics link under your LinkedIn Ad Account name on the Performance screen.
This screen aggregates the data for each person who clicked on your ad in terms of job function, industry, title, seniority, and other factors. This way, you can see if your ad is appealing to a specific demographic. This data is especially useful if you decide to revise your campaign.
At any time, you can go back and edit your existing ad campaign by clicking the LinkedIn Campaign Manager logo at the top of the screen and scrolling down to your ad campaign list.
Then change the ad elements (the image and text of your ad), the audience (the targeting filters you defined), the bid amount and budget for your ad, and more. After you save your changes, your ad campaign is updated with the newest choices you made.
When you look at these metrics and think about how to improve your results, keep these points in mind:
Drop the worst performing variations.
If you created multiple variations of your ad, go back and delete or disable the ones providing the lowest click-through rates. This will raise the effectiveness of your overall campaign and increase the impressions because LinkedIn’s algorithms will be more likely to serve up a higher-performing campaign so it earns more money for that advertising slot.
Change your destination URL.
The problem may be not with your ad but with the conversion page the potential customer reaches after clicking your ad. If you use the analytic software on your own website, you can see whether people are leaving your destination URL without acting on your call for action.
Consider using a face as your ad image.
Other advertisers have mentioned that the best-performing ads they’ve experienced were ads that used a picture of someone’s face as opposed to a logo or product image.
You’re limited to a 50 pixels-by-50 pixels image, so don’t use a complex or text-laden image. You can best connect to your audience with a visual image that’s inviting and personal, such as someone’s face.
Ask for the click.
Although you’re limited to only 75 characters, you should specify for readers to click the link, not just describe what you’re offering. At a minimum, give readers a good idea of what they are receiving or how your offer can improve their life with a tangible benefit.
Test out new content.
After you’ve been running a campaign for a while, try out new content in your ad. It’ll catch the attention of people who have already acted or dismissed your previous ad and raise interest and interaction.
If you run a sponsored update, pay attention to the comments it receives.
If you want your sponsored update to perform better, be sure to like the update yourself, have your employees engage with the update, and answer any comments from customers. That interaction and involvement will raise the update’s visibility and, I hope, gain you further engagement and a positive brand image.
How to Market on LinkedIn Tips
Marketing Yourself through LinkedIn
When it comes to maximizing the benefit you receive from LinkedIn, you are a your biggest advocate. Although your network of connections is instrumental in helping you grow, much of your marketing happen without your involvement.
After you create your profile, that and any other LinkedIn activity of yours are read and judged by the community at large — on the other members’ own time and for their own purposes.
Therefore, you want to make sure you’re creating a favorable impression by marketing the best traits, abilities, and features of you and your business.
Because of the nature of LinkedIn, this marketing occurs continually — 24/7 — so you should look at LinkedIn as something to check and update on a continual basis, like a blog.
You don’t have to spend hours each day on LinkedIn, but a little time on a consistent basis can go a long way toward creating a favorable and marketable LinkedIn identity.
The following sections look at the different ways you interact with LinkedIn, and what you can do to create the most polished, effective LinkedIn identity possible to further your marketing message.
Optimizing your profile
I discuss building your professional profile on LinkedIn, which is the centerpiece of your LinkedIn identity and your personal brand. I refer to your profile throughout this book, but here, I focus on ways for you to update or enhance your profile with one specific goal in mind: marketing yourself better or more consistently.
As always, not every tip or suggestion works for everyone, and you might have already put some of these into action, but it’s always good to revisit your profile to make sure it’s organized the way you intended. To make sure your profile is delivering the best marketing message for you, consider these tips:
Use the professional headline wisely.
Your professional headline is what other LinkedIn users see below your name even when they’re not looking at your full profile.
I’ve seen some users stuff a lot of text into this field, so you should have enough space to communicate the most important things about yourself. If you have specific keyword phrases you want to be associated with your name, make them part of your headline.
A standard headline might read something like “Software Development Manager at XYZ Communications,” but you can write entire sentences full of great keywords for your headline.
Make sure you use keyword phrases that match popular keywords for you or your business.
The first step, as I just mentioned, is to put these phrases in your headline. The second step is to make sure these phrases are reflected in your Summary, Experiences, and Interests sections. Be careful not to overuse your main keyword phrases.
The search engines call this practice stuffing, which is cramming as many instances of a phrase into your site as possible in hopes of achieving a higher ranking. If the search engines detect this, you’ll experience lower ranking results.
If you’re available for freelance work, make sure to identify at least one of your current positions as freelance or self-employed.
Remember, people don't mind readers, so you need to let people know that you’re a freelance writer, website designer, dog walker, or whatever.
Use the additional sections in your profile to include any relevant information that reinforces your marketing message.
For example, if you want to be seen as an expert in a given field, add the SlideShare application to upload presentations you’ve given, or update the Publications section of your profile to include the articles or books you’ve written, articles you’ve been quoted in, focus or advisory groups you belong to, and any speaking engagements or discussions you’ve participated in.
LinkedIn has created sections such as Projects, Patents, and Certifications for you to display specific accomplishments that are an important part of your professional identity.
Make sure your profile links to your websites, blogs, and any other part of your online identity.
Don’t just accept the standard “My Company” text. Instead, select the Other option, and put your own words (up to 30 characters) in the website title box.
Marketing yourself to your network
Optimizing your profile in the ways described in the previous section is one of the best ways to market yourself effectively using LinkedIn. Another is to be alert to how well you’re communicating with your LinkedIn connections.
Whether it’s automatic (like when you update your profile and LinkedIn automatically notifies your network through a network update, assuming you enabled this option in your Settings) or self-generated, this communication becomes your ongoing message to the members of your network and keeps you in their minds and (you hope!) plans.
The most effective marketing occurs when people don’t realize you’re marketing to them. After all, the average American sees all kinds of marketing messages throughout their day. Your goal is to communicate often but not be overbearing about it so your message subtly sinks into people’s minds.
If you do that, people will think you’re grrrr-eat! (Hmm, why am I suddenly hungry for cereal?) So when you’re contemplating how to effectively communicate with your network connections, keep these points in mind:
Update your profile when appropriate.
Updating your profile means that you’re sending an update of your newest projects to your network so that your connections can consider involving you in their own current or future projects.
You don’t need to update your profile as often as you update a blog, but you certainly don’t want to leave your profile untouched for months on end, either. Useful times to update your profile include the following:
Getting a new job or promotion
Starting a new freelance or contract job
Launching a new company or venture
Adding a missing piece of your Experience section, such as adding a new position, updating the description of an existing job, or clarifying the role of a group or interest in your profile
Receiving an award or honor for your professional, nonprofit, or volunteer work
Being appointed to a board of directors or elected to a professional association board
Taking on new responsibilities or duties in any of your endeavors
Take advantage of the Share an Update feature.
When you specify your current endeavors or share your thoughts or observations, several things happen.
Your profile reflects what you enter here, your network connections see what you enter here when they read their network updates about you and you start to build your own microblog, in a sense, because people can follow your natural progression.
Search for, and join, any relevant LinkedIn groups that can help you reach your target audience.
It’s a good idea to participate in these groups, but whatever you do, don’t immediately start conversations just to spam them with LinkedIn messages. When you join the group, you’re indicating your interest in that group because your profile now carries that group logo.
Membership in such groups gives you access to like-minded people you should be communicating with and adding to your network. Spend some time every week or every month checking out LinkedIn groups and networking with group members to grow your network.
Participate on a regular and consistent basis.
The easiest way to ensure a steady stream of contact with as many people as you can handle is to dedicate a small but fixed amount of time to regularly interact with the LinkedIn community.
Some members spend 15 to 30 minutes per day sending messages to their connections, reading through the Groups, Companies, or Influencers page, or finding one to two new people to add to their network.
Others spend an hour a week, or as long as it takes to create their set number of recommendations, invite their set number of new contacts, or reconnect with their set number of existing connections. You just need to establish a routine that works with your own schedule.
Marketing Your Business through LinkedIn
LinkedIn can play a significant role in the effective marketing of your business. LinkedIn’s value as a marketing tool gets a lot of buzz from most companies’ finance departments, especially because they see LinkedIn as a free way of marketing the business.
Although you don’t have to pay anything in terms of money to take advantage of most of LinkedIn’s functions, you do have to factor in the cost of the time you put in to manage your profile and use LinkedIn to the fullest.
Currently, LinkedIn offers your company promotion through its Company pages section. LinkedIn ties status updates, job titles, and other pertinent information from company employees’ profiles directly into the Company page.
From each page, you can see those people you know in the company, open career positions, recent updates from their employees, and other pertinent facts. If you’re a small business, you can create your own Company page.
You need to have your company email address in your LinkedIn profile and be established as a current employee, manager, or owner of that company in your profile as well.
Using online marketing tactics with LinkedIn
Marketing your business on LinkedIn involves working through your own network, employing both your current list of contacts as well as potential contacts in the greater LinkedIn community.
Your efforts should also include making use of links from your online activities to your LinkedIn profile and promoting your business online from your LinkedIn identity. Here are some things to keep in mind as you develop your LinkedIn marketing strategy:
Encourage every employee to have a LinkedIn profile and to link to each other.
Extending your network in this way increases your exposure outside your company. And if someone in your organization is nervous about preparing her profile, just tell her that LinkedIn can be an important asset in her professional or career development.
You can mention that even Bill Gates has a LinkedIn profile. That should do the trick! (And then buy her a copy of this book to get her started.)
Make sure your business websites and blogs are linked to your LinkedIn profile.
By offering your website visitors a direct view to your LinkedIn profile, you’re allowing them to verify you as an employee of the company because they can see your experience and recommendations from other people. They might also realize they share a bond with you and your business that they never would have discovered without LinkedIn.
Make sure your LinkedIn profile links back to your business website and blog.
You not only want your visitors and potential customers to be able to verify who you are, but you also want them to go back to your website and do some business with you! Make sure that you, and every employee of your company who’s on LinkedIn, includes a link to your business’s website and if there is one, the company blog.
If you have a search engine expert working for you, that person may complain about something called a two-way link, which is a link from your LinkedIn profile to your website and a link from your website to your LinkedIn profile.
This practice, known as reciprocal linking, hurts your search engine ranking. If so, have that person identify which of the two links is more important and implement only that link.
Make sure that your most popular keyword phrases are in your company or personal profile.
Use sites such as Wordtracker (www.wordtracker. com) or Good Keywords (https://www.goodkeywords.com) to find the hottest keyword phrases in your field. If your business is doing any online ad campaigns, make sure those keyword phrases are the same as the ones in your profile.
Presenting a consistent image to potential customers makes you and your company look more professional.
Develop relationships with key business partners or media contacts.
When you search for someone on LinkedIn, you can be precise about whom you want to reach. So, for example, if you know that your business needs to expand into the smartphone market.
You can start targeting and reaching out to smartphone companies such as Apple, Samsung (maker of the Galaxy and Note), and HTC (maker of the One). If you want to increase your visibility, start reaching out to media members who cover your industry.
Mining for Clients
It’s a big world out there. In terms of clients, you need to ask yourself whom you’re looking for. Is everyone a potential client, or do you have a specific demographic in mind? A specific skill set?
Maybe you’ve written the greatest plug-in tool for accountants who work in the financial services industry, and you want to sell this tool directly to your likely users.
With LinkedIn, you can conduct a search to find people who match your criteria. Then after you locate those people, it’s up to you to approach them and close the sale, which I talk about in “Closing the Deal,” later in this chapter. Before you start your search, ask yourself some questions that can help you with generating your leads:
Are you looking for people with a specific title or in a particular industry?
Are you looking for high-net-worth or well-connected donors for your nonprofit organization?
Are you looking for decision-makers in a company, or are you seeking a general audience?
Besides your main target industry, can you approach related industries, and if so, what are they?
Does the location of your potential contact matter? Does making the sale require an in-person visit (which means that the contact needs to live near you or you have to be willing to travel to this person)? With your answers to these questions in mind, you’re ready to start searching LinkedIn for your leads.
Generating leads with the Advanced People search
When you’re ready to start looking for leads, I recommend jumping right in with the LinkedIn Advanced People search, which allows you to search the database consisting of hundreds of millions of LinkedIn members based on the criteria you’ve established for the leads you want to generate.
To start a search, enter a keyword in the Search box at the top of any LinkedIn page and press Enter. Say you need accountants who work in the financial services industry. To start such a search, you would type accountants, then press Enter.
Then when the results screen appeared, you would click the Financial Services check box under the Industry field, I also selected the 1st and 2nd Connections checkboxes.
Why? When you search the LinkedIn database, your own network can help you identify your best leads (people only two or three degrees away from you whom you can reach through a first-degree connection introducing you) if you make sure those options are selected.
When you see your search results with those options selected, you first see which results are closely connected with you via your connections.
You can click each person’s name to read his or her full LinkedIn profile, see how you’re connected, and decide whether you have a potential lead. (This method usually gives you much more information than a simple Google search, which would provide only a LinkedIn member’s public profile, not the full profile.)
After you identify your best leads, you can use LinkedIn to find out what connections you have in common: Simply click the name for each search result to see the shared connection.
Generalize your search.
If you’re looking for your ideal contacts independently of the company they work for, focus primarily on the Title field and the options present under the Industry header to find your leads.
Narrow your search.
Use the Keywords field to narrow your results list when you need to reach people within a certain niche of an industry or job.
Target specific people.
Use either the Company or Keywords field, plus the Title field, to help you find specific employees in your target companies.
Help your product or service sell itself.
Search for the customers of your customers to get those people excited about your product or service, so that they’ll demand it from your customers! This strategy is also known as pull marketing.
Finding the decision-maker
Although generating a list of potential leads is a great first step in marketing your product, being an effective salesperson often comes down to finding that right person with whom you can present an offer to buy something. This person is the decision-maker (or the final authority, or even just da boss).
You can talk to as many administrative assistants and receptionists as you’d like, but your sales effort will be stalled without the name or contact info of the person who makes the purchasing decisions. LinkedIn can help you reach that decision-maker in the following ways:
Include words such as Account Manager, Director, or Vice President in the Keywords field when you perform an advanced search. If your results show someone who’s in your extended network, now you have a specific name to mention when you call the company.
I recommend you approach that person via LinkedIn and your mutual connections first, thereby making your first contact with her more of a “warm call” than a cold one.
Access the LinkedIn Company page to find out specific information about your target company.
If you’re trying to reach someone in a company, see whether that person shows up as an employee on the Company page. To do so, start typing the name of the company in the top Search box.
As LinkedIn generates a drop-down list of options, click the company name in the Companies section of the list. For example, suppose that you need to reach someone in Microsoft.
When you bring up Microsoft’s Company page, you get some specific information right away. You immediately see who in your network works for this company, so you know whom to approach to pass along your request to the decision-maker, or to tell you who that decision-maker is.
Scroll down the page to view other useful information, such as recent updates from the company, similar companies or topics to this company, and Showcase pages. You can then follow that company (by clicking the Follow button) to see all its new updates and information as part of your LinkedIn news feed.
Take advantage of your existing network to ask for an introduction, to seek out advice, or to be pointed in the right direction.
Using your network in this manner was basically the original intent of LinkedIn: You contact someone who works at your target company and ask that contact to introduce you to the decision-maker.
The decision-maker is much more likely to be receptive to an introduction than a cold call. Your network connection might also recommend you to the decision-maker, which carries some weight when you try to close the deal.
In addition, you may have a select group of people in your own network who can provide advice on whom to connect with, as well as advice or ideas on selling your product, service, or nonprofit organization.
Use InMail to contact the decision-maker (if she is on LinkedIn) or someone close to the decision-maker.
You may not have the time or opportunity to get introduced to your decision-maker, and if you’re using InMail to approach the decision-maker, why not just go for the gusto and introduce yourself directly?
This is a faster option than waiting or asking for an introduction, but there’s the chance the decision-maker will ignore your message. (In the case where the decision-maker isn’t on LinkedIn, use LinkedIn to find the closest person and ask that person for help, for a connection, or for information to help you reach the next level.) You have to decide what’s best for your situation.
Closing the Deal
Establishing a connection with the right person (the one who makes the purchasing decisions) is half the battle in getting your product sold. However, you still have to convince the person and close the deal. In this section, I give you some pointers on how to put LinkedIn to work for you for the final phase of a sales effort: completing it successfully!
The key to getting the most out of LinkedIn for closing the deal is knowing that LinkedIn has not just names but also detailed profiles of its hundreds of millions of users, millions of news articles and comments, associations made through LinkedIn groups, and corporate information through LinkedIn Company pages.
Suppose that your initial conversations with your prospects have gone well and you’ve been granted a meeting with a potential client to make your pitch.
Whereas you may have already used LinkedIn to gain more information about the specific person, you can now get details about the specific industry, the company, and the company’s potential response to your business pitch. Here are some tips on gathering information about the people you are meeting and the company:
Read the client’s full profile to discover all you can about his or her interests, likes, dislikes, and so on.
You can do far more than simply scan a person’s profile looking for past jobs and view her education to see whether she shares an alma mater with you. A person’s LinkedIn profile can be a gold mine of information about that person.
For example, people may include links to their own websites, blogs, or company websites. Follow those links, especially to blogs or personal websites, and see what you can find out.
In the prospect’s profile, look over the Interests section, their status updates, and the Additional Information section. And don’t forget the Contact Settings section — this is where you can find out under what circumstances this person wants to be contacted. Be sure to respect those wishes.
Read your client’s recommendations for other people.
You can gain a lot of insight by seeing what qualities a person likes to praise in other people, especially if your prospect has left multiple recommendations.
In this way, you also gain insight into the people he trusts, so check those people who received a recommendation to see whether you have a connection to any of them. If so, ask that person first for an introduction to your prospect.
See the activity your client (and the company) has on LinkedIn.
If you pull up someone’s profile, look for a section in his profile page below the summary box called <someone’s> Activity (or <someone’s> Articles and Activity) and click the See More link to see articles and posts that the person made.
And also click the All Activity link for status updates, articles he liked, commented, or shared, and topics he follows.
When you read these items, you might gain some insight into this person’s preferences and hot-button issues — what motivates or annoys him.
Also, look at the Company page, and pay attention to recent company updates. You will get a sense of what the company is promoting, its top focuses, and key company announcements.
Doing so gives you more background information and therefore more confidence; also, this type of knowledge helps you identify interests or commonalities to enhance your sense of connection with your buyer
Reporting a positive sale.
Reporting the completion of a sale is my favorite part of the business sales process. You made the sale, developed the solution, and delivered it to the customer.
At this point, many people think, “Whew, I’m done. Nothing to do now but enjoy happy hour!” This response is common and natural, but as a member of the LinkedIn world, your job isn’t really done.
You want to demonstrate your growth (and your company’s growth) that resulted from handling this project to encourage future contracts to come your way. Here are some actions to consider after you complete the sale and deliver the solution:
Invite your customer to join your network.
You worked hard to earn this customer’s trust and to meet (or exceed) his expectations by completing the sale. As a result, you should feel comfortable enough to send him an invitation to join your network.
Doing so could keep you in contact with this customer for future opportunities. Studies have shown that it’s six times cheaper to sell to an existing customer than to acquire a new customer.
Leave your customer a recommendation.
After you add a customer to your network, post a recommendation for him on the system if you feel it’s deserved. Doing so gives your customer a sense of reward for being a positive contributor, but more important, it informs the community that you did a project for this person, which can help you in the future.
Also, the customer may reciprocate by leaving you a recommendation, which strengthens your profile and makes you more appealing to future prospects.
Stay in touch with your customer.
You can keep track of your customer’s activities by monitoring your network updates. Routinely keep in touch about the solution you delivered, perhaps to open the conversation for selling additional products or services or maintenance contract work.
Update your profile with the skills you acquired or demonstrated through this sale.
To be ready for future prospects who search the LinkedIn database, it’s important to have the right keywords and skill sets in your profile so that these prospects can identify you as someone who can provide a similar solution for them.
If you’re a consultant or a freelance worker, you can add the project you just completed as experience in your profile as well.
Tap the customer’s network by asking him for referrals.
After you connect with your customer, keep an eye on his network. If you think you see a future prospect, consider asking your customer for an introduction or a recommendation.
Usually, if you provided a quality solution, the customer may readily oblige your request, if they don’t feel there is a conflict or a sense of uneasiness.